Shoulders of Giants is a wonderful surprise. It’s a third-person action roguelike with a ton of heart. Great gameplay, stylish graphics, satisfying progression, and a killer soundtrack combine to create a game I loved spending time with. I know it’s great solo so as long as the co-op runs well this is a title you and your friends won’t want to miss.
Hi-Fi RUSH came out of nowhere and floored me. It is one of my favorite-looking games, maybe ever. The combat is sublime, the story is great, and the music just works. Tango Gameworks has shifted from making ok to good horror games and created one of my favorite action platformers of all time.
I came into Forspoken unsure of what I would find. Its initial teasers promised a gorgeous magical world full of incredible sites. Instead, we’ve been given something boring, that runs terribly and has a story full of overused tropes. The combat fares no better, and it’s retailing for $70 at launch. Do yourself a favor and only sate your curiosities once this game is on a deep sale.
There really isn’t much more to say about Kingdom Rush on Xbox. It is a faithful 1:1 port of the mobile game, for better or worse. The controls work well in the end but did require some time to get used to. At only $10 at launch, it’s an easy purchase if you’re already a fan or someone new to the series. Here’s to hoping that this is just the start of the franchise porting over to consoles.
If you love the idea of taking a floppy tube, pointing it at something hot, and spraying all over it until everything is cold and you’re filled with regret then Firefighting Simulator - The Squad can be done alone, but it’s far better with some friends.
Monster Hunter Rise benefits from a tighter focus and massive quality-of-life improvements over its predecessors. The performance is excellent, and your hunts are more enjoyable than ever. With it releasing day one on Game Pass it’s a world worth visiting by yourself or with some buddies.
GRIME is a series of good to great-pieces that are slightly held back by performance issues. Depending on when you’re reading this review I hope those are fixed because this game is fantastic. It’s beautiful, ugly, terrifying, and something any Metroidvania Soulslike fan should love.
Prison Simulator is $20, and I can’t recommend it. While it may be halfway decent on PC control wise it is a mess on console. There is not a single part of the game that is enjoyable to play, and even if it was the overall structure grew stale after a couple of hours of gameplay. This is one Simulation to stay far away from.
For $12 if you are desperate for something to play while you listen to a podcast or some music, get this game on PC. It runs terribly on consoles and feels awful to play. The overall setup and amount of content is its best point, but in execution, it simply isn’t fun.
Bannerlord, in spite of its shortcomings, is a great game to play for tactics enthusiasts and players that love huge battles. Its simulation style of gameplay is fairly unique and keeps me coming back. An easy recommendation to all that love their sandboxes.
HEROish really hedges its bets on the replayability of its campaigns and its bite-sized matches. At its core, I think it works best as an on-the-go game rather than one on your big TV screen. You probably won’t spend consecutive hours playing HEROish, but it works as a good in-between when you’re bored. But in a world where games demand way too much from the player, short and fun games leave me a happy man.
Ultimately, CRISIS CORE REUNION is a great game. It lands the story beats, and the combat feels good. Fans of the original experience on the PSP will find themselves right at home here and new players will have a good time, especially if they like Final Fantasy VII as a whole.